5 Replies Latest reply on Aug 24, 2012 8:08 AM by DaleLong

    FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services

    DaleLong

      Hello,

       

      Our facility is currently looking at having a shiny new Drupal site rolled out, probably in the next several months. We require 2-way synchronization with many parts of the Drupal system to our internal production database, which is in FileMaker. The IT consultant/developer group, who specializes in Drupal, say that the best approach would be to use Web Services. It sounds like they are putting a good deal of the weight on us (read: me) to handle the FileMaker aspect of Web Services, and this is leaving me feeling lost. I have been developing in FileMaker on a part time basis over the past 6 or 7 years, and have acquired a decent amount of ability within the platform. However, I'm having a difficult time knowing where to get my information from for this integration project, because while I know a good bit about FileMaker, I know zero about Drupal and Web Services. In a number of google searches, I've found references to people doing such things, and have come across several plugins that have some sort of 'web services' in them, but I keep getting the feeling that I'm supposed to know Web Services in and out before I can do anything with them. Does anybody have any information that can set me on a path to understand exactly what I'm supposed to do in FileMaker to accommodate this synch strategy, or if it's even the way to go? I realize this may be a very vague inquiry, but it is because I don't even think I know the precise questions to ask at this point. Any direction or insight would be most appreciated.

       

      Thanks!

        • 1. Re: FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services
          BowdenData

          Hi,

           

          If you don't get any specific feedback on this, try contacting Matt Petrowsky. I don't have a direct email for him, but one of his sites is:

           

          http://www.filemakermagazine.com/

           

          There is a 'contact the editor' link there that you might be able to get ahold of him through. I suggest this because he has mentioned in his video's and podcasts about using Drupal extensively. I have seen him do a few postings in this forum, so he might see this as well.

           

          HTH.

           

          Doug

           

          Update: If you go to https://fmdev.filemaker.com/people , you can search for members. Matt goes by the name of "Mattman". Looks like there is a link in the profile where you can send a message to the person.

           

          Message was edited by: BowdenData

          • 2. Re: FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services
            jlisburn

            Hi,

             

            We've managed to integrate our FM based LMS solution quite nicely with a Drupal/Ubercart. Filemaker is connected to the DrupalMySQL using ODBC, which allows me to manipulate data in Drupal's tables as if they were part of my FM solution.

             

            Drupal to FM integration is done by URL commands triggering FM scripts and returning XML. This is a little shakier as you have to be certain not to mess with the Drupal core, and thus reducing your upgrade expansion capabilities. Drupal holds an integration table where it contains key FM values based on the Drupal user, in one case it has to poll a field value (for not null) and act accordingly

             

            FM is definately the flexible partner in the relationship so we tried to use FM as the master source and disabled Drupal edits to integarated fields to reduce the number of integration points.

             

            Works nicely. Key integration point is when Cart takes a sale and tells FM (via URL) to run a command with a given parameter (the order number). The FM script grabs all the required data from Drupal tables and processes them via a mirror 'orders' table in FM so it can analyze (new client? New Salesperson?) and then effect the changes caused by the sale.

            • 3. Re: FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services
              steve.winter

              Hi Dale

               

              There is a fledgling Drupal module for FileMaker available, see http://drupal.org/project/filemaker

               

              The guy who has built it was at DevCon this year, and it was looking promising - it's not D7 ready yet, and still pretty 'raw' in places, but it might do enough for your needs, or it might be that you could help develop the module as part of your development…

               

              See http://filemakerwebsite.com/ for his website about a hosting service he's offering using the module..

               

              Hope this helps.

               

              Cheers

              Steve

              • 4. Re: FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services
                nickorr

                DaleLong,

                 

                Web Services is the way to go.  There are lots of Drupal modules for making the data inside drupal web service enabled, or for accessing other web services.

                 

                For the FileMaker end you can use our free FileMaker plugin to access the services you setup on drupal : http://www.goya.com.au/baseelements/plugin

                 

                And if the drupal developers want to talk to your FMS box using Web Services, then you can use RESTfm to setup your FileMaker Server box as a RESTful web service : http://www.restfm.com/

                 

                Let me know if any of this doesn't make sense or you need any other help.

                 

                Cheers,

                Nick

                • 5. Re: FileMaker integration with Drupal website via web services
                  DaleLong

                  Thanks for all the replies, guys.  I'll take a closer look at this info and share it out with others involved with the project to see how we may move forward.